Many of the promises -- increased productivity, more jobs, more money in our pockets -- have simply not come true. This is ironic because, as free trade agreements become toxic all over the world, Canada, a country bound by a long-standing trade deal, has not had a comprehensive debate on the proposed CETA (trans-Atlantic) or TPP (trans-Pacific) agreements.
Much attention is paid to the fact that, like its predecessors, the Paris Agreement is "toothless" because it isn't backed up by an enforcement mechanism. This pessimism is understandable. Without clear and binding targets, how can any of the signatories be assured that their sacrifices will lead to meaningful emissions reductions? How can they know that the potentially difficult transition towards renewable energy will be a shared burden? The bad news is that the Paris Agreement is unlikely to introduce strict targets or develop an enforcement mechanism in the foreseeable future.
Stability, peacefulness, politeness and a welcoming atmosphere go a long way when considering a nation in which to settle down and raise a family. When you are contemplating flinging free on vacation, those qualities aren't as enticing. So, what do you do if you need to become more attractive? Here are some thoughts.
On top of the generalized global interest about Argentina's move to nationalize its largest energy company YPF, the majority owner of which had been the Spanish energy company Repsol, there is a special local twist as the Mexican President Felipe Calderón has been particularly critical of Argentina's move calling it "very regrettable."
Dalton McGuinty's Green Energy Act has failed to provide the thousands of high value jobs he has spent the last two years claiming it would and Canada's reputation as a free trader is being challenged by important members of the global community. But sadly, it's Ontarians who will clean up the mess.